The Union Hall Knitter — John Morrow

The Union Hall Knitter — John Morrow





Hi Linda:

I thought you might find this story interesting. It involves my great-grandfather William George “Bill” Dunlop of Union Hall:


CHAMPION KNITTER-January 10, 1957

One of the problems of this day is what to do with all the extra time gained from the shorter working week. Mr. William Dunlop, who farmed in the Union Hall district until a few years ago was not bothered too much with the short week anymore than are most farmers but following a serious illness long ago, he took up knitting. In his day he turned out sweaters, socks and mitts for the family and now at 84 is still going strong. This Christmas he knitted ten pairs of mitts for his, grandchildren. He is blessed with excellent eyesight and still drives his own car occasionally. In fact he drove to Almonte from the Union Hall district where he now lives with his daughter and son-inlaw, Mr. and Mrs. Neil McIntosh, just before Christmas.

While there is no reason why men cannot knit as well as women, it is a fact that few become proficient in this line. Nearly all who have done so, have taken up knitting as a hobby while recuperating from an illness. Mr. Dunlop’s hobby followed an operation for a kidney stone from which he made a slow recovery but in his advancing years it has been a wonderful thing for him to be able to pass the time to such good advantage.

From Almonte Gazette

January 10, 1957

Page 1

This originally appeared in the Gazette 4 days after my fourth birthday. While many so-called experts claim a child that young is not likely to remember events, I distinctly remember him coming in to my grandmother’s (his oldest daughter’s) kitchen that afternoon and teasing me about getting older; 3 weeks later he passed away from a stroke. For many years afterwards I had a pair of mittens he had knit for me; unfortunately I think somebody “frogged” them (pulled the stitches apart “rip it, rip it”) on me when I was in my teens.

My brother Kevin learned to knit from our mother when he was about 8 years old and spent time in a group home in Kitchener in his teens where one of the workers wanted to know *whose bright idea it was for him to learn to knit; he reports he responded “I’ll have you know my great-grandfather was a knitter!” To this day he still knits and has taught his wife and all five children to knit as well. His username on a couple of his email accounts is actually “knitterboy”

​John Morrow

Image may contain: 3 people, people standing

Comment and Photo from Kevin Morrow

*To correct a mistake John Morrow posted in the piece about our Great-Grandfather, William Dunlop, the comment me knitting was: “Whose lamebrained idea was that?” not “bright idea”.





Clipped from

  1. The Ottawa Citizen,
  2. 29 Jan 1957, Tue,
  3.  -

Clipped from Edmonton Journal, 30 Jan 1929, Wed, Page 17


John Morrow Writes About MP Ian Murray — Gailbraith — and Rosamond

Dr. Archibald Albert “Archie” Metcalfe — The Man with the Red Toupee – John Morrow

Interesting Tidbits About the Drynan Stanley Family thanks to John Morrow and Rose Mary Sarsfield

About lindaseccaspina

Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda was a fashion designer, and then owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa on Rideau Street from 1976-1996. She also did clothing for various media and worked on “You Can’t do that on Television”. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off on American media she finally found her calling. She is a weekly columnist for the Sherbrooke Record and documents history every single day and has over 6500 blogs about Lanark County and Ottawa and an enormous weekly readership. Linda has published six books and is in her 4th year as a town councillor for Carleton Place. She believes in community and promoting business owners because she believes she can, so she does.

One response »

  1. George Melville Dunlop, usually known by his middle name, the subject of the blurb from the Edmonton Journal, was the fourth of William G. Dunlop’s six sons. Nelson and Norman, named in the obituary above, were older than Melville, as was William McKay Dunlop, who died as a 5-month-old infant before Melville was born; Gordon and Fred (who is still alive in his 99th year) were younger.


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